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EtherID Logo2.1.png
Blockchain Ethereum
Creation Date Nov 29, 2015
Fungibility Non-Fungible
Developer(s) Alexandre Naverniouk
Explorer(s) V1 Contract V2 Contract
Social Account(s) Twitter


Website(s) OpenSea


Fig. 1: EtherID Interface At Launch
Fig. 1: EtherID Interface At Launch
Fig 2: EtherID v2 Migration Reference
Fig 2: EtherID v2 Migration Reference

EtherID is the one of the earliest known ownable and transferable domain name system (DNS) project and the third Non-Fungible Token (NFT) collection on the Ethereum blockchain (after Etheria: deployed Oct 19, 2015) launched on Nov 29, 2015. The project was created by developer Alexandre Naverniouk, and is a precursor to the Ethereum Name Service (ENS) which was launched on May 4, 2017.[1][2] In EtherID's smart contract, the project is referred to as the Ethereum Name Registrar. It contains innovative features including: a built-in marketplace, assignable transfers, a contact information field, and an updatable IPFS hash. Since the first smart contract had critical bugs, a second and verified one was deployed on June 28, 2016 along with complete transfer of ownership and provenance for the domains registered on the first contract. Alongside ERC-721, EtherID even predates the ERC-20 token standard which was fully implemented in 2017. [3]

Early history

The project was announced to the world on Nov 30, 2015 via a Reddit thread titled Ethereum Registrar as it should be! [4] After launching the EtherID project, the developer published a GitHub post titled ERC: Default Ethereum Name Registrar #26 too. He explained the problem posed by complex human unreadable 0x addresses, which made access to DApps difficult. The developer tried to solve this problem by connecting "a human readable name to a hash for usage in IPFS/SWARM or any DHT system". [5] On Feb 9, 2016, the PeerName - a decentralized blockchain-based domains service started offering EtherIDs to its customers. [6]


According to the official documentation, EtherID is a domain registration system. Like most other DNS, it allows registration for a specific period of time, up to 2,000,000 Ethereum blocks, or roughly nine months. The owner can renew the asset indefinitely before it expires. An EtherID domain name is a binary 32 byte value interpretable as UTF-8 encoded string. It allows you to store a secure hash algorithm inside the domain.

These hashes can be used to attach on-chain data, such as an IPFS link (e.g., with artwork or a static website) to an EtherID. The developer explains in a document called “EtherID meets IPFS” and created a NodeJS communication module, called etherid-js, which can be used to interact with the smart contract from a terminal interface. You can view further development on GitHub here. The EtherID interface as it existed back then can be seen in Fig.1 as showing detailed information about the "test" domain.

Supply and rarity

Fig. 3: Supply info
Fig. 3: Supply information

The total supply for the EtherID collection is 33,721 domains from 2015-2018 and the yearly distribution for each of the years is 9,203 (2015), 23,576 (2016), 928 (2017), and 14 (2018). There were no registrations made after 2018 until the rediscovery. The first EtherID domain ever registered was "test" on 29 Nov, 2015. The next day on 30 Nov., 2015 - another 1091 EtherID domains were registered, these initial two-day mints are now known as the Alpha mints.

EtherID supply is split across two batches. There were 32,301 EtherID domains registered on the critically buggy unverified v1 contract, which were eventually migrated to the fixed, final, and verified contract. These are known as the Genesis mints. This migration from the flawed contract was carried out by using special lines of code in the second contract (see Fig.2). After the migration date, 1,402 EtherIDs were registered on the second and verified contract. The combined supply is hence 33,721 for all historically significant years (see Fig. 3).

The mechanism used for transfer of ownership by database migration was letting previous owners claim the domains again by paying gas fees for renewal, which were reserved against their addresses. It's a similar method to the one now used by the Ethereum Name Service (ENS) which migrates the previous domain records/ownership to the new contract with each upgrade.

Among these 33,721 EtherIDs, the majority of them are plain words. Once we exclude all special characters and mixed ones with digits, we are left with 26,437 EtherID domains in total. 24,258 are from the Latin alphabet, followed by Chinese (886) and Arabic (375) words. Other languages make up 918 EtherIDs.

Besides, there are 2,398 historical digits of which 10 are one digits (1D), 100 two digits (2Ds), 981 three digits (3Ds), and 1,295 four digits (4Ds). The first 1D is "1“. It was registered on November 30, 2015 as the second EtherID directly after "test". The first 2D is "10", which was also registered on November 30, 2015 (rank: 10). The first 3D is "360", which was registered on November 30, 2015 (rank: 101), while the first 4D is "1337" and registered on December 02, 2015 (rank: 1,117).

Given the encoding feature, EtherIDs can also be emojis (277) and ASCII art (142) very much like the Punycodes. The category Others (4,467) includes all kinds of word/digit, word/special character mixes. It also captures 199 complete blank EtherIDs for which there is no valid decimal to UTF-8 decoding. One could interpret those as kind of misprints.

One of the notable aspects of EtherIDs is its first digits and ASCII names on Ethereum if you take into account the earlier Linagee Name Registrar (LNR) names (there are 63 LNR names that were initial registered in 2015/16 based on the verified contract from August 8, 2015) and Etheria.

EtherID v1 bugs

EtherID first contract (v1) was replaced with the second verified contract because it had critical bugs, as a detailed postmortem by the developer confirmed on 30 Jun, 2016. [7] It had the severe “unchecked-send” bug, which was the same exploit used in the DAO hack (later resulting in the Ethereum/Ethereum Classic bifurcation hard fork). A comprehensive explanation of the "unchecked-send" bug can be read here. The contract’s other bug was 0 name domain creation, which caused issues with domain enumeration. For these reasons, the v1 EtherID contract was never verified. The improved second version of the smart contract (v2) was verified and deployed on Jun 28, 2016. The developer mentioned it cost around 100Ξ to migrate the database to the new contract.

Around 290 EtherIDs were not migrated to the verified contract (v2) even though they have been registered on the v1 contract before the migration date. The EtherID team do not exactly know why they were not migrated but they are not added to database because for those EtherIDs there is technically no link between the first and the second contract.

Marketplace and Chrome extension

Fig. 4: Screenshot of the EtherID Market place
Fig. 4: Screenshot of the EtherID Market place

EtherIDs featured an on-chain marketplace for domain names trading, the seller could simply set a price for the domain and buyers could buy it in a trustless manner (see Fig.4). The interface showed the expiry and price for every domain. If an EtherID domain expires, it is free to claim plus gas fees. This was likely the second NFT marketplace on the Ethereum blockchain (after Etheria).

At the same time, EtherID had a browser extension.[8] It allowed you to resolve EtherID domains to IPFS hashes in your browser. The developer ceased support to further develop it and it is unknown if it is fully functional at the time of publishing. It still serves as an early example of infrastructure for a decentralized domain name system (DNS).

Rediscovery and recent efforts

The exact rediscovery date of the EtherID NFT project is disputed, however it wasn't until January 2022 when Historical NFT collector, Jeremiah Long, began working on efforts to revitalize the project. Since that time, Jeremiah and a small group of blockchain historians in the NFT community have been working on the revival for the EtherID website, which uses the same domain as in 2015.

Since EtherIDs predate the ERC-20 and ERC-721 standard, the tokens need to be wrapped to make them compatible with modern NFT wallets. The team has developed an ERC-721 Wrapper (easy to deal with via, which allows the trading of these domains on OpenSea, LooksRare, and x2y2. The wrapper requires two steps ("Prepare wrap", then refresh website, then "Wrap"). The first step is also unlisting any EtherID that has been listed before on the zero-fee marketplace.

The team also resurrected the browser extension in an updated and streamlined version that does not need to run a full Ethereum node. The EtherID Youtube channel provides some videos how to use Pinata to store an IPFS hash with an EtherID and how to use the browser extension. In addition, there is an onCyber gallery for those community members who want to display their wrapped EtherIDs.